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Yves Smith

This article is cross-posted from Naked Capitalism

An article in the Boston Review by professor of sociology Claude Fischer falls prey to a pattern that is all too common: attributing social/political outcomes to American attitudes without bothering to examine why those attitudes came to be.

Let me give you a bit of useful background before I turn to the Fischer article as an illustration of a lack of curiosity, or worse, among soi disant intellectuals in America, and how it keeps Americans ignorant as to how many of our supposed cultural values have been cultivated to inhibit disruptive thought and action. (more…)

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Posted: July 3rd, 2012

This article is cross-posted from Naked Capitalism…

Adam Davidson is moving up in the world. He has gone from fellating the 1% to the top 0.1%.

But bear in mind that we can’t hold Davidson solely responsible for his latest assault on common sense, decency, and most important accuracy. It was the editors of the Sunday Magazine that not only decided to showcase an interview with Mitt Romney’s uber wealthy former partner Edward Conard (“The Purpose of Spectacular Wealth, According to a Spectacularly Wealthy Guy“) but to give it a full 6 pages (per my browser) and put it on the magazine cover. Conard says his new career is to “make his case for a new, decidedly pro-investor way to think about the economy.” And what follows is half-baked, largely inaccurate, unabashed propaganda. (more…)

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Posted: May 3rd, 2012

This article is cross-posted from Naked Capitalism

There is so much crookedeness among our elites that it’s hard to know, absent more systematic study, whether Harvard is playing a leading role in this decline.

However, the glaring gap between Harvard president Drew Faust’s talk on ethics and her recent actions has stuck with me and I’ve concluded it merits discussion. (more…)

Posted: March 5th, 2012

This article is cross-posted from Naked Capitalism.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has been celebrated as the progressive Great White Hope. But the danger of assuming leadership is that that individual becomes a target both of attacks and of seduction. And while I’d like to think better of Schneiderman, an announcement earlier this evening has strong hallmarks of Schneiderman falling prey to the combined pressures and blandishments of the Administration and its allies.

(more…)

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Posted: January 25th, 2012

This article by Yves Smith is cross-posted from Naked Capitalism

I’ve deliberately waited a bit before examining the remark of one Jason Barker, an employee of the New York Fed, on a New York Post article that ran the day after the November 17 Occupy Wall Street protests. My initial negative reaction to his comment still holds. (more…)

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Posted: November 29th, 2011

This article by Yves Smith is cross-posted from Naked Capitalism.

Washington DC appears to be readying itself for a repeat of the TARP, namely, the passage of unpopular legislation to appease the Market Gods (and transfer even more income from ordinary Americans to the Masters of the Universe). It isn’t yet clear whether this drama will be played out via generating bona fide financial market upheaval or mere threat-mongering (the Treasury market seems pretty confident that well-trained Congresscritters will fall into line). But unlike the TARP, which was a classic example of well-placed interests finding opportunity in the midst of upheaval, this reprise is a far more calculated affair. (more…)

Posted: July 25th, 2011